Circles, Conversation And Community with Vicki Robin, Juanita Brown, Ph.D. & Leif Utne

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Are you politically progressive or conservative? Do you lean toward the left or the right? Is the American flag a symbol of freedom for all people of all nations or does it herald our right to fight for democracy in all corners of the world? Is it possible that all these different views are based on similar core values? Vicki Robin, Juanita Brown and Leif Utne believe that if Americans take time to talk with one another, in a space that allows each of us to speak freely and be heard, we’ll find that our views have much more in common than we realize. They invite us to let our guard down and create a meeting ground where we don’t have to agree with people. When we allow space to be heard and to listen to people, the result can be a meeting of minds and a discovery of new ways of thinking that can “reenergize people’s passion for the dream that shaped this country.” At a time when our democracy seems threatened by the very desire to protect it, Robin, Brown, and Utne inspire us to join together to move beyond the middle ground and find a higher ground. (hosted by Michael Toms)


Juanita Brown, Ph.D. is founder of Whole Systems Associates, which collaborates with international clients in the development of large-scale change initiatives. 

Juanita Brown is the author of:

Vicki Robin has been a pioneer at the forefront of the sustainable living movement. She has helped launch many sustainability initiatives including: The New Road Map Foundation, The Simplicity Forum, The Turning Tide Coalition, Sustainable Seattle, The Center for a New American Dream, Transition Whidbey, and more. In the 1990’s she served on the President’s Council on Sustainable Development’s Task Force on Population and Consumption. For fun, Vicki is a comedy improv actress, appearing frequently with her troupe, Comedy Island.

Vicki Robin’s books include:

To learn more about Vicki Robin’s work go to

Leif Utne is a globe-trotting social entrepreneur, activist, journalist, and musician. As co-owner of Cross Cultural Journeys, a socially-responsible tour company specializing in small-group learning journeys to more than 20 countries, he leads marketing and financial planning, and occasionally leads trips.

To learn more about Leif Utne’s work go to

Topics Explored in This Dialogue

  • How to recognize when your wisdom voice is speaking
  • How the conversations we have with our neighbors can affect the future of our country
  • Why conversation is an important part of being a citizen in a democracy
  • How you can create a space where people of different viewpoints can discover their common ground
  • What are the six agreements that set the stage for a conversation in which every voice is heard
Host: Michael Toms      Interview Date: 1/29/2004      Program Number: 3032